Chicago - I may be so realistic to say that most teachers and administrators share one conclusion: A significant change is expected in the future. A change that would impact every single aspect of our schooling system. The academic settings would be designed to respect various choices. Administrators would experience less authority. Teachers would no longer dominate the scenes. Computers and electronic devices would replace textbooks and notebooks.Objectives would be redefined to tackle new concerns. Parents would contribute more of their efforts and thinking. Curricula would be planned to comply with new occurrences in the world of business and economy. Partnerships with corporations and associations would be a necessity. Parents Teachers Organizations would have significant roles. The academic agendas would be more politicized.
Chicago – I may be so realistic to say that most teachers and administrators share one conclusion: A significant change is expected in the future. A change that would impact every single aspect of our schooling system. The academic settings would be designed to respect various choices. Administrators would experience less authority. Teachers would no longer dominate the scenes. Computers and electronic devices would replace textbooks and notebooks.Objectives would be redefined to tackle new concerns. Parents would contribute more of their efforts and thinking. Curricula would be planned to comply with new occurrences in the world of business and economy. Partnerships with corporations and associations would be a necessity. Parents Teachers Organizations would have significant roles. The academic agendas would be more politicized.
I do not see a certain limitation to change. Rather, I would expect teachers to work in a complete different academic sphere to serve different academic agendas. The current debate on ethnicity and its influences on education, the excessive use of internet and electric devices, the growth of distance learning, the political lobbyism and the market influence and the socioeconomic challenges would top the academic agenda and be a major topic in the academic debate and consequently define the curricula of tomorrow.
Ten years from now, schools would have to find effective academic formulas to meet different expectations. Ethnicity, religious freedom, gender, sex and politics would be major topics in the academic debate. The curricular activities would have to be designed to respond to the ever-growing challenges. The current debate on Tamazight and La Francophonie is a vivid illustration.
The Thinking of today is a thinking of clicks and buttons. Of course, technology and web-based inventions have been occupying our privacy and have been directing us towards new ends. In the world of today, time and space have new dimensions in the course of our lives. Human activities are influenced now by new trends, and our experiences are centered on new concerns. Cellular phones, Geographical Positioning Systems, LCDs, and so on are offering new sources of information and new sorts and definitions of knowledge.
In Education, these technological revolutions are enforcing new attitudes in our academic processes and are making of learning a more inventive and tech-based experience. Teachers’ role will change dramatically and will be “redefined from being the providers of the information to that of a navigator for the students to discover the information for themselves. They will be learning facilitators for the students, and will concentrate on building the social skills of the student, in order for them to be effective future members of society.” (Castro, 2001, p. 1).
The current technology-influenced trends would generate an intensive concentration on technical assessment of information provided to students and an impressive progression of technology and a transmission of its usage into formal curricular application. Peer discussions and problem-solving skills’ activities would be a priority in teachers’ instructive practices. “It is definitely a fact that the definition of knowledge has changed from having information stored in the brain, to “being able to have access to any information at any time, and being able to use modern technology in order to locate it.” (Castro, 2001).
The current age is of digital and network connections and our legislators and executive authorities are aware of the need to enable our kids of high quality schooling that can enhance critical thinking and round understanding of the current situations. Directing our curriculum towards these tech ends is not an option now. Rather, it is a necessity and an obligation. As an example,the number of colleges and universities offering online-based learning in the United States is increasing and so is the number of students having this option. Schools’ programs of tomorrow should consider these alterations of learning in the design and implementations of their curriculums. “Online learning will continue to slowly move into most work places, in order to keep the pace with all of the information that is influencing our daily lives (Castro, 2001, p.3). Our options are limited to one choice. A choice to offer our beloved children equal and adequate qualities of teaching and learning so they can grow and succeed.
“Each individual has a right to be ‘educated’, to become ‘autonomous, free thinking’ and capable of making morally sound decisions, they also have the right to become physically ‘autonomous’ within the physical world – we would not expect a concentration on say math and English alone to provide rounded, ‘knowledgeable’ individuals.”(Crushing, 2007, p.4). This was quoted to introduce the wrong choice still made to invest primarily in what we chose to identify as core subjects in our academic disciplines. It is simply not working as we can not build our foundations on deceived conclusions.
The development of our schools in the future would rely on the quality of our curriculum and the amount of investment given equally to increase our students’ knowledge of political complexities and the socioeconomic occurrences of the world of today and tomorrow along with productive concentration on Math, Science, Economics, Physics and Chemistry. We need individuals with potentials and skills to manage their future and engage in this dynamic course of life and have significant awareness of the world politics, culture and socioeconomics. Our schools would fail to compete and our students will not be able to stand for their dreams if the same concentration on those subjects we call “core” continue to dominate our priorities.
Essential to our success is our predictions and expectations of the future challenges.Current occurrences indicate the aspects and the characteristics of our schools in the future. I can see a vested interest in technology and an excessive use of its means. I can see a shift in the teachers’ role towards facilitation and I can see issues of diversification and multiculturalism to be drawing more attention and I can only hope of stronger partnerships and internships. I always consider change to be continual and accelerative. A school with its personnel strives and uses all of its possibilities to respond to its students’ needs.
My word to you is to to appreciate teachers’ efforts in accommodating themselves with the ever-changing occurrences. New laws impose new attitudes. New regulations require new practices. New occurrences enforce new thinking. The magic word is new. The future would have new challenges. Time and space may be approached in different ways. The pace of change may increase. Yet, teachers would always be prepared to stand on the forefront. It is their destiny and their choices. The day they chose to be teachers was the day they governed themselves with laws of change and reform. The process continues to reform itself from within and out and so do we.